A lot of people have high blood pressure, medically known as hypertension, despite not knowing anything about the condition. Dubbed as “the silent killer,” high blood pressure is one of the leading causes of death and disability worldwide, with more than 1.6 billion recognized cases since 2016.
In Australia, one in every seven adults is most likely to have high blood pressure. Although that is better than the global ratio that says one in every five adults has hypertension, that is still a significant number of people who suffer from the condition. While high blood pressure can be prevented and treated by changing and improving one’s lifestyle, consistently monitoring your blood pressure can do wonders in managing the condition better or completely avoiding it.
According to studies, people who regularly monitor their blood pressure levels are more likely to improve their condition than those who don’t. This is not surprising since most causes of high blood pressure stem from poor lifestyle choices which can easily be avoided with proper awareness. For instance, one of the usual causes of high blood pressure is an unhealthy diet, but if the person knew which kinds of food to lessen or avoid because of how they negatively affect his/her blood pressure, he/she will have better chances of improving his/her health.
Having your own blood pressure monitor available in the comfort of your home will help you to regularly check and keep a record of your blood pressure levels so that you can also identify the things that affect it negatively.
Things to Know About Buying a Home Blood Pressure Monitor
There are a number of things you need to know about blood pressure monitors in order to make a good decision in purchasing one. When finding a blood pressure monitor for your home, the first thing you should consider is the size of the monitor’s cuff.
All blood pressure monitors will include an arm/wrist cuff which you’ll be wrapping around your arm/wrist so that the machine can take and record your blood pressure. Once wrapped, you will inflate the cuff by either squeezing a rubber ball attached to it or just by pushing a button, depending on whether you opted for a manual or automatic blood pressure monitor.
The pressure will start to drop down on its own after inflating the cuff, and that’s when the blood pressure reading will appear. It is important to have the proper size of the cuff for the patient because if it’s too loose or too tight, the resulting blood pressure will always be inaccurate. If the patient’s arm/wrist is larger or smaller than most people, it would be a good idea to locate a model with a cuff size that fits your measurements. Some medical suppliers offer custom-made cuffs for rare sizes since most blood pressure monitors only come with medium-sized cuffs.
Speaking of cuffs, you can choose to go for either arm or wrist-type models for your device. Arm-cuff models are more advisable if you plan to use the blood pressure monitor on yourself, as they are mostly automatic so it will be easier for you to take your own results.
While using wrist-cuff models aren’t too difficult, it’s not recommended for people over fifty years of age as the pressure from the cuffs can cause pain at higher levels. Whichever you prefer, make sure that you go for automatic monitors – only get a manual type if there will be someone else trained to use it who will always be there to take your blood pressure. Otherwise, efficiency and simplicity would be your best options.
Speaking of simplicity, make sure that you only pay for what you need. Since technology has become so advanced, there are several features on different models that might be offered in the market. While things like bluetooth connectivity and cloud storage capacity might sound attractive, these are add-on features that your blood pressure monitor can surely do without. Unless you really want these added programs and have a lot of money to spare, try not to overspend on things you don’t really need.
There are a lot of apps that will tell you they have the same functions as a blood pressure monitor, and it might be tempting to just download one on your smart phone instead of purchasing an actual blood pressure monitor. However, most if not all of these apps will only give you inaccurate information, as they lack the necessary testing and certification from legitimate health organizations. It’s better to buy the real thing than risk it and find yourself fretting over false blood pressure results.
Lastly, remember that all blood pressure monitors can only last so long, so be sure to get a replacement once your device starts acting up. Always check multiple times to test the accuracy of your blood pressure results, experts recommend at least three times to get an average reading. It is important that you get a monitor that caters to your specific needs, so try talking to a professional medical supplier if you need more information.